Serrapeptase and Nattokinase: Understanding the Differences

By Danielle Huntsman, MS CNS LDN

Enzymes play an essential role in thousands of chemical reactions responsible for growth, repair production, and metabolism. Digestive enzymes are well known and studied for supporting the breakdown of macronutrients into smaller molecules necessary for proper absorption. Systemic enzymes such as Serrapeptase and Nattokinase are necessary to support vital functions in the body and aid the body's natural healing process.*


Source: Serrapeptase is a proteolytic enzyme produced by the enterobacterium Serratia marcescens E-15. Serrapeptase has been used in traditional medicine in Asia and Europe for over 30 years. Originally, Serrapeptase was isolated from the microorganism Serratia found naturally in the silkworm’s intestine, Bombyx mori L.2. Thanks to modern science, Enzyme Science produces a vegan formula using Serratia that is created in a lab, eliminating the need to source Serrapeptase from the silkworm.

Benefits: The proteolytic nature of this enzyme allows and helps the body naturally repair and maintain homeostasis; this is due to its ability to dissolve dead and damaged tissue, a by-product of the healing response.[1] Systemic stress can result from the body's physiological response as a natural defense to protect against threats and foreign invaders; Serrapeptase helps maintain a healthy reaction to this stress.[2]

What does this mean for our patients? Because Serrapeptase is known to decrease the natural fluid viscosity in joints after a physical impact, it can be a great choice for those looking to speed up recovery time and regain mobility.[3]



Source: Natto, has been consumed as a traditional food in Japan for thousands of years. It was discovered in the 1980s by Japanese research. Nattokinase is produced by the bacterium Bacillus natto during the fermentation of soybeans to produce Natto.

Benefits: Both Serrapeptase and Nattokinase have been shown to have fibrinolytic properties.[4] Fibrin is an insoluble protein necessary for proper blood clotting. Healthy levels of fibrin are required for blood coagulation and a functioning cardiovascular system. These enzymes break down fibrin and other damaged tissues necessary for circulatory and cardiovascular health.*[5]

Nattokinase takes it a step further by providing support for adequate blood flow and healthy circulation. Nattokinase also has a direct effect on increasing plasminogen activation, necessary for optimal heart function.[6]

Both of these proteolytic enzymes have unique properties and benefits. The dosage for Serrapeptase and Nattokinase can vary depending on intended use and duration. Taking these type enzymes on an empty stomach, away or between meals, is recommended.



[1] Elchinger P.H., Delattre C., Faure S., Roy O., Badel S., Bernardi T., Taillefumier T., Michaud P. Effect of proteases against biofilms of Staphylococcus aureus and Staphylococcus epidermidis. Lett. Appl. Microbiol. 2014;59:507–513.

[2] Tiwari M. The role of serratiopeptidase in the resolution of inflammation. Asian J Pharm Sci. 2017 May;12(3):209-215.

[3] Bhagat S, Agarwal M, Roy V. Serratiopeptidase: a systematic review of the existing evidence. Int J Surg. 2013;11(3):209-17.

[4] Sumi H, Hamada H, Nakanishi K, Hiratani H: Enhancement of the Fibrinolytic Activity in Plasma by Oral Administration of Nattokinases. Acta Haematol 1990;84:139-143

[5] Santhosh K. The emerging role of serratiopeptidase in oral surgery: literature update. Asian J. Clin. Pharm. Res. 2018;11(3):19–23.

[6] Yatagai, C., Maruyama, M., Kawahara, T., & Sumi, H. (2008). Nattokinase-promoted tissue plasminogen activator release from human cells. Pathophysiology of haemostasis and thrombosis, 36(5), 227–232